What the Thunder Said: analisi

Analisi e spiegazione in lingua inglese del capitolo 5 del poema "The Waste Land" di Eliot: What the Thunder Said (Ciò che disse il tuono) (2 pagine formato docx)

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What the Thunder Said: analysis (“The Waste Land”, T.S.

What the Thunder Said” is the fifth and last section of T.S. Eliot’s poem “The Waste Land” (1922). The poet is one of the most representatives of the symbolic and modernist style, which characterised the culture of the time after the First World War.
This section follows the fourth one, “Death by Water”, which gave the idea of the spiritual shipwreck of the society of the time, whose general crisis is the central theme of the whole poem.
Therefore, at its end the poet tries to find a solution in the values of religion, especially those of the Hindu Upanishads.
Free verse and no rhyme are used. We can also find some alliterations and onomatopoeia, which reveal the importance given to the sound of words. All the characteristics of “The Waste Land” style are present, both in rhetorical devices (metaphors, symbols, repetitions) and techniques (use of history, the myth and quotations, the “objective correlative” and the juxtaposition of concrete and abstract elements).

Thomas Eliot: riassunto in inglese


As for the themes, at first the speaking I describes the desolate and very arid landscape of the Waste Land and its inhabitants, who are “hooded hordes swarming”. The horizon, which is traditionally associated to the widening of perspective, becomes here an object correlative, because it “rings” and so imprisons them. The juxtaposition of past and present appears with the names of the cities at verses 374-375 : as the ancient capitals of culture (Jerusalem, Athens, Alexandria) fell, the future ruins of the modern decadent culture will be in Vienna and London. Another contrasting landscape is described by opposing decadence and death (verses 385-390) to spring and the beginning of something new (391-394). All was left in a state of complete carelessness, even the graves, as no one cares about two of the primitive human values, that are religion and respect for ancestors. However, the cock announces a change, that is the rain, which may symbolise purification and a new spiritual life.

The burial of the dead (The waste land) di Eliot: analisi in inglese


The poet informs us that the place is the Himalaya chain, from which the Ganges can be seen (another symbol for purification), because the central theme has its start: the recovery of the values contained in the Hindu fable of the Thunder. The latter is the father of gods, men and demons, who, when asked to speak, only replies “DA” to them. Each group will give a different interpretation of it, each forming the triad of moral principles of the Thunder, which must be practiced in life.